Zeedijk is Amsterdam’s Chinatown, or rather Chinastreet. It’s a street where Asian restaurants battle with coffeeshops, “kroegen” and strangely located shops for customers. Restaurants come and go but there are of course restaurants there to stay. Hoi-Tin is one of them, though I will not talk about the food in the restaurant.
Hoi-Tin is one of the restaurants that has a small bakery next to the restaurant that might be even better and more popular than their restaurant. For only € 0.80 you can choose one of their Chinese snacks. There’s no possibility to eat in as the bakery can only hold 4 people. On the weekend Chinese families cue in front of the store to buy boxes full of cakes, buns and other sweets.
Their knowledge of English (and Dutch) is limited so asking what kind of pastry it is, is useless. I, therefore, made the mistake of thinking the filling of a bun was sweet while it wasn’t. But mistakes are there to be made and who knows, you might find a new favourite?
Next to all the unknown buns, there are also popular favourites. Egg tarts, coconut cakes, steamed cakes and cha siu buns sell out quickly so be early if you want to try their signature cakes. And if you can’t resist, their duck dishes are prepared in the window right next to the bakery.